I believe that formative assessments are an essential tool to actively monitor student progress and understanding. Formative assessments allow for me to continually adapt my curriculum based on student learning. Summative assessments are also necessary, as they are my means of measuring and verifying student growth and learning.
In my experience, formative and summative assessments allow for me to play a more informed and effective role before, during, and after instruction. When I can actively assess my students’ learning during instruction, using a formative assessment, I can see their progress and areas of strength or weakness. I can then use this information to modify my teaching.
Summative assessments are what I can use to measure what my students have learned or ways they have improved after a given lesson or instruction. Summative assessments are opportunities for reflection, both personal, in ways I can improve my teaching, and student-related, as I can see areas where my students may still need more instruction.